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Friday, April 4, 2014

Here's the Front Company The FBI Used to Bust Sen. Leland Yee

Posted By on Fri, Apr 4, 2014 at 3:00 PM

click to enlarge I think "Grand Theft Sacramento" is in here somewhere - FACEBOOK
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If you've done business with a company called Madison International Enterprises anytime recently, it might be time to hire a lawyer.

You've been dealing with an undercover FBI agent.

That's the name of the phony shell company undercover federal agents claiming to be, ahem, "legitimate businessmen" used to ensnare state Sen. Leland Yee on public corruption charges, according to records.

On two occasions, the undercover FBI agent pretending to be an East Coast-based Italian mobster agreed to cut Yee a check, once for $5,000 and one for $1,800, according to the FBI affidavit made public last week.

That matches up exactly with the contributions to Yee's Secretary of State campaign made by "Madison International Enterprises," a company whose headquarters are in a UPS store in Manhattan, according to records. Yee has since abandoned his campaign.

Yee and political consultant Keith Jackson had numerous run-ins with several undercover FBI agents, according to the lengthy affidavit filed in federal court last week.

One pretended to be a medical marijuana businessman from Arizona. Another was the supposed real-life Tony Soprano mafioso, who had infiltrated Raymond "Shrimp Boy" Chow's Ghee Kung Tong.

According to the feds, Yee and Jackson solicited campaign contributions from the unsavory characters in return for official deeds -- a proclamation honoring the Tong, introductions to other state legislators. They took cash from the undercover agents, the affidavit claims, but on two occasions they also took a check, one for $5,000 and another for $1,800.

There are a few out-of-state donors on Yee's Secretary of State campaign donor list, but very few from New York City -- and only one that has contributions received around the dates the FBI claims the checks were cut.

click to enlarge yee_fed_donors.jpg

There is no Madison International Enterprises registered with New York State's Division of Corporations, according to records.

And what entries are listed on the Internet for the business link to disconnected phone numbers and an address that's a Manhattan UPS store.

Obviously, it would have been glorious if other politicians had received cash from the feds, too. However, the phony fed front only donated to Yee, according to records.

This is not the first time federal agents have set up shell companies to trip up politicos. In the late 1980s, feds made up a fake shrimp processing company in West Sacramento. One of their targets was then-Assembly Speaker Willie Brown, who the feds were so desperate to nab that they stuffed a $1,000 contribution under his office door. It was returned.

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About The Author

Chris Roberts

Chris Roberts has spent most of his adult life working in San Francisco news media, which is to say he's still a teenager in Middle American years. He has covered marijuana, drug policy, and politics for SF Weekly since 2009.


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